Karly-Marina Loaiza (born July 17, 1994), known professionally as Kali Uchis, is a Colombian-American singer and songwriter. Her music industry debut was her 2012 mixtape, Drunken Babble, which was described as “genre-defying”. She released her first EP, Por Vida, in 2015 to even further praise. Her debut studio album, Isolation. Released in 2018 to widespread acclaim.
Moreover, Her parents moved from Pereira, Colombia to the United States in the early 1990s, fleeing the conflict in Colombia. She and her family moved around back and forth between the U.S. and Colombia. She started elementary school in Colombia and moved back to the U.S. in third grade. And also, she graduated from T. C. Williams High School but said she often skipped classes to spend time at the photo lab, making experimental short films. While growing up, she learned to play piano and saxophone. Also, she wrote poetry, songs, and music, but did not initially intend to sing, being was rather more interested in directing films than being in the spotlight. Given the nickname “Kali Uchis” by her father.
Furthermore, she stated that she’s influenced by the music of the 1960s, with its mix of early soul, R&B and doo-wop, saying: “Musically and aesthetically, the culture of it just inspires me.” She also mentioned that she enjoys jazz, stating during her career beginnings that she draws musical inspiration from Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday. Other musicians, she cited as influences on her sound are Curtis Mayfield, Loose Ends, Ralfi Pagan, and Irma Thomas.